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The role of cognates in bilingual aphasia: Implications for assessment and treatment

Lalor, Erin and Kirsner, Kim
The role of cognates in bilingual aphasia: Implications for assessment and treatment. Aphasiology, 15(10-11), 2001, pages 1047-1056.


A morphological description of the bilingual lexical system suggests that bilingual lexical organisation is similar to that in monolinguals and is governed by the morphological relationships between words. According to this theory, lexical items are stored in clusters according to their morphology and regardless of language. Cognates (words that are similar across languages) are stored together in the same lexical cluster, whereas non-cognates (words that are dissimilar across languages) are stored separately. This paper presents the results of a study that examined performance on word recognition tasks for cognates and non-cognates in an Italian/English aphasic subject. The subject completed naming and lexical decision tasks involving cognates and non-cognates. Performance was better on cognates in both languages, and low- frequency cognates in the more impaired language benefited from their high-frequency translations. These results have implications for current theories of bilingual lexical organisation and the assessment and treatment of bilingual aphasia.

EPrint Type:Journal (Paginated)
ID Code:1189
Conference:Clinical Aphasiology Conference: Clinical Aphasiology Conference (2000 : 30th : Waikoloa Beach, HI : May 2000)
Conference Date:May 2000
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
Publication Location:London
Alternative Locations:,
Additional Information:Access to Full Text is subject to the Publisher's access restrictions